Tips to Step in Your Single

Stepping into a single is one of the more difficult tasks a newbie sculler encounters. Entering your shell from a dock should be done as gracefully as the strokes you take once you are on the water. 

Here are tips to practice getting into your single safely

  • First, check that both oars are in the oarlocks, gates closed, and collars pushed against the pins.
  • The blade on the water should be feathered.
  • Push your handles towards the foot-stretchers until you can touch the tips of the handles together.
  • Butt the ends of the handles together then draw them back firmly against the oarlocks to stabilize the hull.
  • Stand alongside your boat near the sternward end of the seat deck.
  • Bring the seat to the three-quarter slide position so it will be in the right place where you can sit on it.
  • Place your outside hand (on the water’s side) over the ends of the handles, then, with one foot step onto the seat deck between the tracks with the seat behind you.
  • Standing on one leg, use the support of the handles to support some bodyweight by pulling towards you and slightly up. Your other hand can hold onto the dock-side rigger.
  • Bring the other foot into the boat and place it in the shoe as you lower your weight down to the seat as if doing a one-legged squat. 
  • You can also step in with both feet onto the seat deck and then sit down on the seat.
  • Lower gently onto the seat and avoid stepping directly on the seat tracks. 

Reverse to get out

To get out, push your handles sternward, butt the handles together again, scoot up the slide, take your feet out of the shoes, put one foot back, stand up on the water’s side leg, and step out onto the dock. 

If you are saying to yourself, “that sounds pretty tricky,” start a land program to improve your coordination, balance, and flexibility to squat.